Perry County spoils Forrest finale
Perry County (19-5) came into Thursday night's contest at Forrest riding an eight-game winning streak and the Lady Vikings made it nine in a row, beating the Lady Rockets 59-52 in a hard fought game.
"We didn't play bad for the second game in row," Forrest coach Jeremy Jean said. "We didn't play bad against Moore County too, but we still got beat, so we just need to find a way to win."
It was the second loss this season by Forrest to the District 12A second place squad with the first setback coming via a 41-39 defeat at Linden on December 1.
"The last time was a good game too, but we had to come back late," Jean said. "This game we had a three-point lead in the fourth quarter, we missed some assignments, don't guard shooters, they hit two 3's in a row and we are down three."
The contest was well-played from the outset as both teams swapped first quarter leads before the Lady Rockets broke a 14-14 tie on a Kyleah Hengesbach rebound and put-back.
After a tie-up won by Forrest, Caitlyn Yost drilled a 3-pointer, making it 17-12.
Chynia Brooks knocked down a layup for Perry and the period ended on a backdoor basket by Yost.
Yost, who led all scorers in the game with 20 points, had seven points in the first quarter along with Hengesbach for Forrest, but the second period belonged to Perry County, who outscored the Chapel Hill girls 13-5 to take a 27-24 lead at the intermission.
Perry County made 6-of-7 from the free throw line in the second quarter and finished with a solid 14-for-16 performance for the game from the charity stripe.
Forrest turned the tables in the third quarter, picking up the effort on the defensive side of the ball as they held Perry County to just two field goals, while scoring 11 to grab a four-point lead, entering the fourth quarter.
Forrest held a slim 37-34 lead when Perry County got hot, beginning with an Alle Hinson 3-pointer that started an 8-0 run for the Lady Vikings, who opened up a five-point lead at 42-37.
Collins goes deep for 3's
Hailey Collins, who ended up with 16 points, nailed the first of her three 3-pointers in the fourth quarter, keeping Forrest alive and her second trey tied the game at 45.
Reagan Floyd was tough all night for Perry County, coming through several times for the Lady Vikings and her basket with two minutes to go in the game gave the Linden girls the lead for good.
Forrest (15-13) had an opportunity to keep it closer after the Floyd bucket, but went 0-for-4 from the free throw line and gave up several easy transitions baskets near the end of the game.
The Lady Rockets take on winless Fayetteville at 1 p.m. tomorrow in a District 9A Tournament play-in game at Forrest.
Just play hard
"We just have to go play, they will throw something at us that we have not seen, so we have prepared all year long for when it does happen," Jean said. "When we play hard the entire game, we can beat anybody, when we don't play hard we will get beat and it's that simple."
Jean added, "They know it's do-or-die, but we try not to dwell on it because I'm afraid it will freak them out, so hopefully we can go into Saturday's game and get the nerves out and go play Huntland Monday and they won't."
Perry County 14 13 4 28-59
Forrest 19 5 11 17-52
Perry County- Reagan Floyd 16, Miranda Boutwell 15, Chynia Brooks 13, Alle Hinson 5, Julian Snow 4, Jesse Tucker 3, Jaycie Roberts 2.
3-point goals-Boutwell 4, Tucker 1, Hanson 1, Brooks 1.
Free throws-Boutwell 1-2, Roberts 2-2, Brooks 2-2, Floyd 9-10.
Forrest-Caitlyn Yost 20, Hailey Collins 16, Kyleah Hengesbach 12, Krista Chapman 2, Sydney Hill 2.
3-point goals-Collins 3, Hengesbach 2, Yost 2.
Free throws-Hengesbach 0-2, Collins 3-3, Madison Curtis 0-2, Hill 2-2.
Halftime score-Perry County 27, Forrest 24.